In addition to the pocket change he gets working at a nearby pizzeria. He also earns $60 per month on RuneScape and RuneScape gold can afford cornmeal for arepas and rice for his son and sister. For Marinez who works online, the game isn't just about the arepas. It's about escaping, even if he believes that the medieval fantasy game is boring.
One of the biggest economic collapses in the past 45 years outside of a conflict, some in Venezuela have turned toward the game of video as a means for survival and possibly a way to move. It's not just about being before a screen. It can mean movement. Herbiboar hunting in RuneScape can help fund today's food and tomorrow's future in Colombia or Chile the countries in which Marinez is a member of the family.
Across the Caribbean Sea in Atlanta, almost 2,000 miles away from Marinez lives Bryan Mobley. When he was a teen the game he played was RuneScape frequently, he told me via phone. "It was enjoyable. It was a means to get away from homework, shit like that," he said.
Aged 26 now, Mobley thinks differently about the game. "I do not see it as an actual world anymore," he told me. According to him, it's something like a "number simulation," something akin to virtual roulette. An increase in the stash of buy 2007 runescape gold in-game currency is an increase in dopamine.